10 things to know about this year’s G7
The G7 summit, hosted by this year's Japanese G7 presidency, takes place in Hiroshima City, Japan from 19-21 May.
By Climate Champions | May 19, 2023
This year’s G7 Summit serves as a crucial platform for leaders to come together and address the urgent challenges that affect us all. Held in the historic city of Hiroshima, Japan, the summit underlines the importance of international cooperation and collective action in shaping a sustainable future. Led by Prime Minister Kishida Fumio, the G7 Summit offers a unique opportunity to discuss and find solutions to pressing issues such as climate change, energy security and nuclear disarmament. Against the backdrop of Hiroshima’s resilient history, the summit embodies a powerful symbol of unity and progress in confronting the world’s most pressing concerns.
Japan takes the lead: G7 Presidency and Ministerial meetings
Japan’s assumption of the G7 Presidency in 2023 marks a year-long platform for over 10 Ministerial Meetings across the country. These meetings, attended by government officials, media representatives, and international participants, provide forums to discuss global challenges and set the stage for the G7 Summit that begins on 19 May.
From past to present: Origins and evolution of the G7 summit
Originating in the 1970s, the G7 Summit emerged as a platform for comprehensive discussions on policy coordination across key topics. Today, leaders from France, the US, the UK, Germany, Japan, Italy, Canada, and the EU exchange candid views on pressing global challenges and issue outcome documents based on their discussions.
Hiroshima: A symbolic venue for global unity
Choosing Hiroshima as the venue for the G7 Summit carries deep symbolism. The city, having endured the devastating impact of an atomic bomb, represents resilience and the pursuit of lasting peace. By highlighting Hiroshima’s remarkable recovery from the atomic bombing, Japan wants to underscore the importance of global collaboration and collective efforts to build a better and more peaceful future.
Strengthening global cooperation: Prime Minister Kishida’s vision
Against the backdrop of escalating global crises, Japan’s Prime Minister Kishida Fumio, in a recent statement, said the summit will aim to demonstrate the G7 commitment to denounce military aggression, nuclear threats, and attempts to disrupt the international order. “There are mounting challenges facing the international community, such as the global economy including energy and food security, regional affairs including Ukraine and the Indo-Pacific, nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, economic security, and global issues including climate change, global health, and development. As Chair, I will facilitate candid discussions among the G7 Leaders to articulate ideas and plans for the future,” he also said.
Climate action in the spotlight: G7’s commitment to a sustainable future
Climate action will be a key focus for this year’s G7 Summit, in light of the urgency to address climate change and transition to a low carbon economy. With the responsibility to cut emissions and unleash a resilient and net zero world, the G7’s collective leadership plays a critical role in achieving the Paris Agreement’s goal of limiting global temperatures to 1.5C.
Going beyond commitments: Expanding climate efforts
While G7 countries have made significant climate commitments, more action is necessary. Fossil fuel subsidies continue to impede the transition to clean energy. To address this, there is growing pressure for G7 nations to redirect financial support towards renewable energy, remove market distortions, and promote low carbon innovation.
Leading the way: G7’s Global influence on climate agenda
As leaders gather for the G7 Summit, the event carries immense weight in shaping the global climate agenda. With the G7 countries representing a significant share of global GDP and historical emissions, their commitment to climate action sets an example for the rest of the world. By expanding climate commitments, ending fossil fuel subsidies, and investing in renewable energy and innovation, the G7 can lead the way in driving transformative change.
Protecting nature: G7’s joint efforts to tackle biodiversity loss
During the G7 ministerial on climate, energy, and environment in April, G7 Climate and Environment Ministers agreed on a joint statement to address global nature loss. Their commitment reflects the urgent need to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by 2030, as underlined by the Kunming-Montreal biodiversity agreement, which set a target to restore 30% degraded ecosystems on land and sea by 2030 and conserve 30% of the world’s marine and terrestrial areas.
Mobilizing climate finance: G7’s call for action
To implement this, ministers agreed that significant amounts of climate finance were required. In the April ministerial, G7 countries called upon Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs), International Financial Institutions (IFIs), and businesses to join in these efforts and contribute positively to biodiversity.
Doubling down on environmental protection: G7’s pledge to address plastic pollution and more
In line with their commitment to protect the environment, the G7 ministers in April also pledged to redouble efforts to combat plastic pollution, aiming to end it by 2040. They have also committed to halting and reversing forest loss by 2030, protecting marine biodiversity in the high seas, and reducing pollution.